Famed Professor Stephen Hawking has stated that if humans are to survive another 1,000 years, we will have to find a new planet to live on.
He stated, however, that he is proud of the time he is living in, though he acknowledges something drastic will have to change in order to keep humanity intact:
“Our picture of the universe has changed a great deal in the last 50 years and I am happy if I have made a small contribution. The fact that we humans, who are ourselves mere fundamental particles of nature, have been able to come this close to understanding the laws that govern us and the universe is certainly a triumph.”
Hawking told students at the Oxford University Union in Oxford, UK, that we will plough through our resources much too quickly if we stay on our home planet.
“But we must also continue to go into space for the future of humanity. I don’t think we will survive another 1,000 years without escaping beyond our fragile planet.”
Over the next millennia, Hawking said that scientists would be able to better map our place in the universe to ensure that we can find a habitable place to call home over the course of the next 1,000 years.
He has also stated that the doesn’t believe sustainable colonies on other planets, like Mars, will be ready for mass immigration of people for another 100 years, so until then we will all need to learn how to live together and share our resources. Without doing so, humanity, he states, will be doomed.
Hawking’s final message to the students, however, was much more uplifting than the previous. He encouraged them, as the future of astrophysics, to not give up and continue working toward solutions for humanity and our ultimate survival.
“Remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Try to make sense of what you see, wonder about what makes the universe exist. Be curious. However difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at. It matters that you don’t just give up.”